New Here

New Here

New Here

Brothers and Sisters, 
   
  
We are pleased to share with you that Bellevue will be reopening her doors for public worship beginning July 5th for a single 10am worship service. Among the many changes are, limiting the seating in the sanctuary as well as shortening the service to 45 minutes in length. The Session met for a Called meeting on Thursday, June 18, to discuss whether we should reopen and what protocols would look like for our church gathering. Session was unanimous in our desire to reopen as safe as we could possibly make it.

However, this decision has not been an easy one for us to make. Thank you for your continued prayers. We are concerned for your physical wellbeing and health and want to communicate to you that just because we are opening our doors does not mean we believe the virus is gone from our community. It is still alive. However, we do believe that, with what we know, we can mitigate the possibility of spread at this point given certain protocols listed below. We have stated that we are following the CDC and Governing guidelines and as of Friday, June 26, Lancaster County moves into the Green Phase. While we have been an essential business all along, we chose not to meet to protect our community. But now given the new guidelines we believe it is right to open our doors as have most other churches in our vicinity. 

So please hear this loud and clear: Open for worship does not mean you need to attend. We will livestream our worship services and post them afterwards as well, so even if you are home you can partake. You need to make the right decision for yourself and your family about what you believe is wise in this time for you. If you do not think attending a worship service is wise for you, please don’t! We will not judge you for a decision that you feel you need to make. And if you do attend, we will do our best to make it as safe as possible. Our heart is to provide for you one way or another and to do so in as safe a manner as possible. 

Our leadership has had three phases in mind during this time. Phase One has been at home worship, prayer, Bible study, and such (the phase we are just stepping out of). We are now moving into Phase Two where public worship is being offered (prayer and Bible Study will continue via video). Phase Three, the Lord alone knows when, will be when we resume every public ministry 
With all of that said, here are the protocols the Session agreed upon. We want to make you aware of these protocols before you think of or attend a worship service, as things will look and feel quite different. 

PHASE TWO PROTOCOLS:

  • Preregistration Required!
    • We are requiring that each person/family wanting to attend worship must preregister for us to properly know numbers and set up for safety. You can do so by calling the church (speaking to a staff member or leaving a voicemail) or by emailing the office with how many individuals will be coming on July 5th from your family. Many will remain home, and that is good for them, but if you would like to come please register.
       
  • The worship service will be livestreamed and recorded for any not present
     
  • Masks will be required by all who attend worship
    • Masks will be provided at the entrance to Friendship Hall if you do not have one.
       
  • Physical contact is highly discouraged and parents need to be responsible for their children 
     
  • Single use bulletins will be placed on your pew prior to arrival
     
  • The use of a plexiglass shield in the pulpit will allow pastors to “unmask” to address the congregation
     
  • Greeters
    • Greeters will greet from a reasonable distance and direct folks to go directly to the Sanctuary. There will be multiple hand sanitizer units available as you enter and exit.
    • Following the service there will be no greeting at the door of the Sanctuary.
       
  • Seating
    • Seating in alternate rows with six (6) feet between families.
    • Families with children should be given priorities to outside rows so the children can color/play in the side aisles during the service. There is no children’s church or childcare at this time. This was not an easy decision to make but one that upholds our desire to provide a safe environment. 
  • Entering and leaving the building
    • The only open door for entry will be the double doors to Friendship Hall. Please use this door when entering.
  • Entering and leaving the Sanctuary
    • Gathering in Friendship Hall will be discouraged before and after the service.
    • Maintain reasonable distancing between family groups on entering and leaving the Sanctuary. 
    • We will dismiss groups or pews at the end of the service in order to avoid crowding and we ask that you exit directly to the outside patio.
       
  • Worship materials
    • Hymnals and Bibles will be removed. We encourage you to bring your own Bible. 
    • The Friendship Pad will temporarily be discontinued.
    • After each service pew tops and sides will be wiped down (surfaces that are typically hand touched). Between weeks, the used areas will be properly disinfected. 
    • We will sing a reduced number of hymns that will be printed in our bulletins (masks worn).
       
  • Offering
    • We encourage you to continue to give online or at the collection plates placed at the door before or after the service as an act of worship.
       
  • Communion
    • We will not have Communion on July 5th and are still working on details for how to have it safely.
       
  • Coffee Hour, Friendship Hall
    • Coffee hour will not be offered, nor will gathering in Friendship Hall be permitted.
       
  • Sunday School
    • Sunday School is suspended.
       
  • Children’s Church, Nursery
    • These also are suspended.
       
  • Choirs, Music
    • Music is an integral part of worship. Hymns may be sung with masks on.
       
  • Committees and other gatherings
    • Committees and other groups should meet via Zoom.
    • Groups of ten (10) or less may meet if reasonable distancing can be maintained. 

We hope you will see our heart and intent in all of this to worship the Lord in as safe an environment as we can provide. We care for your wellbeing, physically and spiritually, and look forward to gathering together for worship soon. Please continue to pray for all of our wisdom in this unique time. 
 
For the Session,
Pastor JT Holderman